Former Algerian President Abdelaziz Bouteflika dismantled the country's nuclear programme in response to Western pressure and to serve Israel's interest, presidential candidate Abdelkader Ben Kreina send yesterday.
Speaking at a rally held in Chlef in western Algeria ahead of the 12 December presidential election, Ben Kreina said: "Former President Abdelaziz Bouteflika dismantled the Algerian nuclear project for the benefit of the Zionist entity and has been subjected to Western pressures that feared Algeria's development in the nuclear field."
The head of the National Building Movement who was a former minister in Bouteflika's government, continued: "Everyone knows that Bouteflika was the first to shake hands with a Zionist official, and he was a friend to them," in reference to the former president's handshake with former Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Barak during the funeral of King Hassan II in Morocco.
Algeria has two nuclear reactors. In the mid-nineties the US expressed its fears that one would be used to produce nuclear weapons; claims Algeria denied, opening its reactor up for inspection by the International Atomic Energy Agency.